Presented By:John Hancock Logo

Participant Information: Athletes With Disabilities

Paving the way for disabled athletes since 1975


  • All individuals with disabilities must follow entry procedures and qualifying standards of the B.A.A. 
  • The Boston Athletic Association follows the rules and guidelines of the International Paralympic Committee ( which are recognized by Wheelchair Sports USA, Disabled Sports USA, and the United States Association for Blind Athletes.
  • The Boston Marathon has a push rim wheelchair and blind/visually impaired division, and a mobility impaired program which includes a limited number of hand cycle participants and duo teams. 
  • Medical documentation or proof of disability classification, in the form of a doctor’s letter, must be submitted with the entry form. 
  • The B.A.A. reserves the right to reject any entry, issue special invitations, cancel the race, expand or further limit the field, or adjust the entry procedures for these divisions.



Registration occured on a “rolling admission” schedule, beginning with the fastest qualifiers. On Monday, October 6 at 10:00 a.m. ET, eligible participants, who met the qualifying standard for their age and gender by 20 minutes or more, were allowed to register. On Wednesday, October 8 at 10:00 a.m. ET, with space remaining in the field, registration opened for those who met their qualifying standard by 10 minutes or more. With space still remaining, registration opened on Friday, October 10 at 10:00 a.m. ET for those who met their qualifying standard by five minutes or more. Registration temporarily closed to access the field size on Saturday, October 11 at 10:00 p.m. ET.

With space still remaining after the first week of registration (Monday, October 6 through Saturday, October 11), registration re-opened for all qualifiers from Monday, October 13 at 10:00 a.m. ET through Wednesday, October 15 at 5:00 p.m. ET. As during the first week of registration, entry during that period (Oct 13-15) was not first-come, first-served and the fastest qualifiers among these submissions were given entry as space allowed. On Monday, October 20 registration once again re-opened to anyone who met the qualifying standards. Registration remained open on a first-come, first-served basis until the maximum field size (see field sizes below) was reached.



For the 2015 Boston Marathon, due to space and safety constraints, field size maximums have been set for Athletes with Disabilities as follows:

  • Wheelchair - 70
  • Mobility Impaired - 50
  • Visually Impaired - 70
  • Hand cycle - 18
  • Duo Teams - 6



Push Rim Wheelchair Division
An open class T51-T52 and T53-T54 event for men and women who use wheelchairs in sport and have completed the marathon distance with a valid qualified performance, this division follows the rules and guidelines as defined by International Paralympic Committee. Able-bodied individuals may not participate in the Wheelchair Division.

ClassAge GroupMenWomen
Open (Classes 3 & 4) 18-39 2hrs 00min 2hrs 25min
40-49 2hrs 15min 2hrs 40min
50-Over 2hrs 30min 2hrs 55min
Quad (Classes 1 & 2) 18-39 2hrs 45min 3hrs 10min
40-49 3hrs 00min 3hrs 25min
50-Over 3hrs 15min 3hrs 40min

Blind / Visually Impaired Division
The qualifying time is 5:00 hours for visually impaired athletes (men and women) classified T11, T12, and T13. IPC Class Description for the Blind/Visually Impaired:

  • T11: Visual acuity is poorer than LogMAR 2.60. From no light perception in either eye to light perception, but inability to recognize the shape of a hand at any distance or in any direction.
  • T12: Visual acuity ranges from LogMAR 1.50 to 2.60 (inclusive) and/or the athlete has a visual field that is constricted to a radius of less than 5 degrees. From ability to recognize the shape of a hand to a visual acuity of 2/60 and/or visual field of less than five degrees.
  • T13: Visual acuity ranges from LogMAR 1.40 to 1 (inclusive) and/or the athlete has a visual field that is constricted to a radius of less than 20 degrees. From visual acuity above 2/60 to visual acuity of 6/60 and/or visual field of more than five degrees and less than 20 degrees.

Mobility Impaired Program
Individuals with permanent physical disabilities that affect their ability to ambulate may be granted the following extended qualifying times:

  • The qualifying time is 6:00 hours for individuals who, because of the nature of their disability, have difficulty ambulating
  • The qualifying time is 8:00 hours for individuals who, because of the nature of their disability, need mobility aids such as prosthetics, leg braces or crutches to ambulate
  • This program follows the IPC Guidelines for eligible and non-eligible impairment types (

Hand Cycle Program
Individuals who use hand cycles in sport and have completed the marathon distance with a valid qualified performance may apply to this program.  Men and women must meet the qualifying standards for their age and gender as posted in the Boston Marathon Wheelchair Division. Able-bodied individuals may not participate in the Hand Cycle Program.

Duo Team
A Duo Team is comprised of one able bodied person pushing a permanently disabled person in a customized racing wheelchair.  Both team members must be at least 18 years of age on race day of the Boston Marathon. The team must achieve the qualifying standard set for the able bodied participant’s age and gender at a certified marathon within the current qualifying window (click button below to see Qualifying Standards).


All of the information above is subject to change at any time.

B.A.A. Moment 2

1935 John A. Kelley

Born in West Medford, Massachusetts as one of ten children, Kelley ran track and cross-country at Arlington High School in Massachusetts. He did not finish his first Boston Marathon in 1928, but eventually competed in a record 61 Boston Marathons. A legend of the marathon, Kelley won the 1935 and 1945 runnings of the Boston Marathon. He finished in second place at Boston a record seven times. Between 1934 to 1950, he finished in the top five 15 times at Boston, consistently running in the 2:30s. He ran his last full marathon at Boston in 1992 at the age of 84, his 61st start and 58th finish there.